By John McDevitt
TRENTON, N.J. (CBS) — Endorsing Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, New Jersey governor Chris Christie says he isn’t worried that Romney is not leading in the polls right now.
Christie, appearing this morning on “CBS This Morning,” says races usually tighten in the end and his guy will do just fine in Saturday’s South Carolina primary.
“I think he is going to do very well on Saturday,” Christie said. “They now know it’s crunch time. All the other people in this race know that if Mitt Romney wins South Carolina, this very well could be their ‘over.’ ”
Christie says he isn’t campaigning for Romney in South Carolina because he just gave his State of the State address in New Jersey (see related story) and his first priority is New Jersey.
“My first and my most important job is to lead the State of New Jersey, and so that’s why I’m here. I did a telephone town hall last night for Governor Romney with 25,000 people last night in South Carolina, so there is lots of ways with technology right now to help in South Carolina.”
Christie was asked how Romney is going to bring Democrats and Republicans together if he can’t even bring the Republican Party together right now.
“Nobody was saying four years ago, that I recall, ‘Oh, Barack Obama can’t bring the Democratic Party together ’cause that stubborn old Hillary Clinton still wants to run.’ I mean, listen, people still have the right to run. When we get to 1,150 delegates, then Mitt Romney is going to be the nominee and then it’s going to be all over.”
Governor Christie also talked about cutting taxes by 10 percent across the board in New Jersey — something that he got some heat about from Democrats:
“So we are talking about $300 million a year going back to people. And the thing I love about Democrats in my state is, the only time I ever hear them talk about fiscal responsibility is when we are trying to give money back to people. But when they wanted to spend a billion dollars more than we had in the budget last year, you didn’t hear them talk about fiscal responsibility then.”
Christie says the point is that the state’s residents have suffered a great deal and deserve to get some of their money back — and he says we are doing it in a responsible way by phasing it in over three years.